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GeForce GTX 280 vs Radeon HD 7870 XT

Intro

The GeForce GTX 280 features a GPU clock speed of 602 MHz, and the 1024 MB of GDDR3 memory runs at 1107 MHz through a 512-bit bus. It also is made up of 240 SPUs, 80 TAUs, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

Compare those specs to the Radeon HD 7870 XT, which has GPU clock speed of 925 MHz, and 2048 MB of GDDR5 memory set to run at 1500 MHz through a 256-bit bus. It also is comprised of 1536 SPUs, 96 Texture Address Units, and 32 Raster Operation Units.

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Power Usage and Theoretical Benchmarks

Power Consumption (Max TDP)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 185 Watts
GeForce GTX 280 236 Watts
Difference: 51 Watts (28%)

Memory Bandwidth

Performance-wise, the Radeon HD 7870 XT should theoretically be quite a bit superior to the GeForce GTX 280 overall. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 192000 MB/sec
GeForce GTX 280 141696 MB/sec
Difference: 50304 (36%)

Texel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT should be a lot (approximately 84%) better at AF than the GeForce GTX 280. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 88800 Mtexels/sec
GeForce GTX 280 48160 Mtexels/sec
Difference: 40640 (84%)

Pixel Rate

The Radeon HD 7870 XT is much (more or less 54%) faster with regards to anti-aliasing than the GeForce GTX 280, and able to handle higher screen resolutions better. (explain)

Radeon HD 7870 XT 29600 Mpixels/sec
GeForce GTX 280 19264 Mpixels/sec
Difference: 10336 (54%)

Please note that the above 'benchmarks' are all just theoretical - the results were calculated based on the card's specifications, and real-world performance may (and probably will) vary at least a bit.

Price Comparison

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GeForce GTX 280

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870 XT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Please note that the price comparisons are based on search keywords - sometimes it might show cards with very similar names that are not exactly the same as the one chosen in the comparison. We do try to filter out the wrong results as best we can, though.

Specifications

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Model GeForce GTX 280 Radeon HD 7870 XT
Manufacturer nVidia AMD
Year June 17, 2008 November 2012
Code Name G200 Tahiti LE
Memory 1024 MB 2048 MB
Core Speed 602 MHz 925 MHz
Memory Speed 2214 MHz 6000 MHz
Power (Max TDP) 236 watts 185 watts
Bandwidth 141696 MB/sec 192000 MB/sec
Texel Rate 48160 Mtexels/sec 88800 Mtexels/sec
Pixel Rate 19264 Mpixels/sec 29600 Mpixels/sec
Unified Shaders 240 1536
Texture Mapping Units 80 96
Render Output Units 32 32
Bus Type GDDR3 GDDR5
Bus Width 512-bit 256-bit
Fab Process 65 nm 28 nm
Transistors 1400 million 4313 million
Bus PCIe x16 2.0 PCIe 3.0 x16
DirectX Version DirectX 10 DirectX 11.1
OpenGL Version OpenGL 3.1 OpenGL 4.3

Memory Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the maximum amount of information (measured in megabytes per second) that can be moved past the external memory interface in a second. It's worked out by multiplying the bus width by its memory speed. If it uses DDR type RAM, it must be multiplied by 2 again. If it uses DDR5, multiply by 4 instead. The better the bandwidth is, the better the card will be in general. It especially helps with anti-aliasing, High Dynamic Range and high resolutions.

Texel Rate: Texel rate is the maximum texture map elements (texels) that can be processed in one second. This is calculated by multiplying the total texture units of the card by the core speed of the chip. The higher the texel rate, the better the video card will be at handling texture filtering (anisotropic filtering - AF). It is measured in millions of texels processed in a second.

Pixel Rate: Pixel rate is the maximum amount of pixels the graphics card can possibly write to the local memory in one second - measured in millions of pixels per second. Pixel rate is worked out by multiplying the amount of Render Output Units by the the core clock speed. ROPs (Raster Operations Pipelines - aka Render Output Units) are responsible for outputting the pixels (image) to the screen. The actual pixel output rate is also dependant on lots of other factors, most notably the memory bandwidth - the lower the bandwidth is, the lower the ability to get to the max fill rate.

Display Prices

Hide Prices

GeForce GTX 280

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Radeon HD 7870 XT

Amazon.com

Check prices at:

Please note that the price comparisons are based on search keywords - sometimes it might show cards with very similar names that are not exactly the same as the one chosen in the comparison. We do try to filter out the wrong results as best we can, though.

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